Ben Mallott takes the helm at Alaska Federation of Natives

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Ben Mallott. Photo from his LinkedIn.com account

Longtime AFN President Julie Kitka announced her retirement from the organization earlier this year. A search commenced for a new leader. Now, AFN Vice President Ben Mallott, 38, has been named president.

Mallott, of Juneau, is the son of the late Lt. Gov. Byron Mallott of Yakutat and retired schoolteacher Toni Mallott, originally of Rampart. He is a board member for various nonprofits, including being chairman of the Alaska Humanities Forum, a trustee of the Nature Conservancy Alaska and on the board of the Alaska Native Heritage Center. Mallott is a graduate of Oregon State University and has a master’s degree from American University.

Prior to working for AFN, he served as a legislative assistant for U.S. Sen. Lisa Murkowski on federal policy areas relating to Alaska Natives and rural Alaska. He is vice chair of NTVI, an 8(a) subsidiary of Baan O Yeel Kon Corporation.

The appointment of Mallott comes at a time when AFN had taken a sharp turn toward radical leftist politics under Kitka, who ran the organization for 33 years. In doing so, it lost some important Alaska Native corporations that left AFN due to policy differences, including Arctic Slope Regional Corporation, Doyon and the Aleut Corporation. Tlingit Haida Central Council, the largest federally recognized tribe in Alaska, also dropped from AFN.

When Doyon left AFN and later rejoined, it published a statement outlining its concerns and actions it had taken to try to correct the course of AFN:

“Doyon’s decision to withdraw from AFN was made by the Doyon Board of Directors after significant deliberation and after a long history of sharing our concerns with AFN leadership.  Doyon engaged with AFN for over a decade, sharing our concerns and advocating for continued improvement in the AFN organization, decision-making, and services provided to its members; these requests were all made well prior to the decision to withdraw.” The entire statement is at this link.

Byron Mallott, Ben’s late father, served as president of the AFN and received a “Citizen of the Year” award from the organization. Ben Mallott’s brother Anthony Mallott served as president of the Sealaska Corporation until January of this year.

Governed by a 38-member board, the Alaska Federation of Natives is the largest statewide Native organization in Alaska, whose membership includes 179 federally recognized tribes, 154 village corporations, 9 regional corporations, and 10 regional nonprofit and tribal consortiums that contract and compact to run federal and state programs.

24 COMMENTS

  1. Rehabilitation of a family name is always a challenge. The late Byron Mallott wrecked lives and careers. You can check with former governor Bill Walker to verify. We wish Mallott junior a safe journey at his new post.

  2. How many decades has southeast alaska controlled the alaska federation of natives? Can we at least move the capitol out of juneau so people from the arctic and other natives are represented in law, justice and economic and sociocultural issues. If our, the Alaska native organizations, elections & AFN’s elections were certified by the state they would have different outcomes. These are the most corrupt self-serving group of so called cultural leaders… the alaska culture of crime continues… this is why everyon is leaving alaska. They, or julie kitka would get upset if 3 or more people from the arctic got together and asked for anything. I’m glad to not be alaskan. This is the biggest joke in history, these groups are so corrupt… once upon a time I was Julie kitjas special assistant for telecommunications, she’s a thief and very unimpressive as her entire group only because they’ll do anything, copy, steal, defraud, white-collar crime, steal your data and life. He doesn’t represent me as an Alaska native.

    • It’s not our fault Sealaska, Goldbelt, and Huma Totem have their crap together than the rest of the native communities. These are internal issues you need to resolve for yourselves.

      We could move the capital to the moon and it won’t make any difference. It’s the quality, more the lack thereof, of the legislators the state sends us. Until Alaska elects better people it’s same crap different session.

      Are you Alaskan or not? You’ve taken both sides of that inside of 5 sentences.

      As a proud Juneauite, build us the damn road from Skagway, come get the capital and take it. Wins for everybody.

      • Oh, that’s right, you are from Juneau, you don’t need a plane to get to the capitol or a job. You can walk, a fact, an opportunity, a right that’s only available to Juneau residents. That’s not governing all of Alaska. Your access to the law makers is NOT a convenience the rest of Alaska- like the arctic, 1200 miles away from Juneau! Let me know when you understand you enjoy access to a road system that leads you to the state capitol, I’ve never been to the alaska state capitol. I was born in the arctic and have a medical condition acquired by the native health facilities that cannot be treated by the same people who injured me. The alaska native tribal health consortium, southcentral foundation and the alaska federation of natives. It’s not about you or juneau. It’s about access to justice. I don’t identify w racist snobs.

      • Deprivation Of Rights Under Color Of Law
        Share
        Summary:
        Section 242 of Title 18 makes it a crime for a person acting under color of any law to willfully deprive a person of a right or privilege protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States.
        For the purpose of Section 242, acts under “color of law” include acts not only done by federal, state, or local officials within their lawful authority, but also acts done beyond the bounds of that official’s lawful authority, if the acts are done while the official is purporting to or pretending to act in the performance of his/her official duties. Persons acting under color of law within the meaning of this statute include police officers, prisons guards and other law enforcement officials, as well as judges, care providers in public health facilities, and others who are acting as public officials. It is not necessary that the crime be motivated by animus toward the race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin of the victim.

        The offense is punishable by a range of imprisonment up to a life term, or the death penalty, depending upon the circumstances of the crime, and the resulting injury, if any.

        TITLE 18, U.S.C., SECTION 242

        Whoever, under color of any law, statute, ordinance, regulation, or custom, willfully subjects any person in any State, Territory, Commonwealth, Possession, or District to the deprivation of any rights, privileges, or immunities secured or protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States, … shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than one year, or both; and if bodily injury results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include the use, attempted use, or threatened use of a dangerous weapon, explosives, or fire, shall be fined under this title or imprisoned not more than ten years, or both; and if death results from the acts committed in violation of this section or if such acts include kidnapping or an attempt to kidnap, aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to commit aggravated sexual abuse, or an attempt to kill, shall be fined under this title, or imprisoned for any term of years or for life, or both, or may be sentenced to death.

        Updated May 31, 2021

        https://www.justice.gov/crt/deprivation-rights-under-color-law

    • I’d like to see it in my lifetime that Native organizations stop appointing generational candidates to key appointments. How many titles do the generational appointeeshold? There’s no way any organizational candidate can hold two or more organizational appointments and do a quality job. It’s a slap in all of Alaska Native faces that we keep appointing father/son or mother/daughter leadership. Stop cutting off your nose despite one’s self. There’s plenty of good Alaska Natives to choose from. We need to encourage the up and coming young people leadership by giving them the same trust to represent their future leadership. Stop the practice of nepotism leadership. The Mallotts aren’t the only quality leadership we need.

      • Thank you! It’s extremely anticompetitive and it’s because only the native corporations and tribal council/board members vote. It’s actually more like a heram the way it is, fight crime with collusion… delusional imo. If Alaska fulfilled it’s oversight requirement by certifying our elections, ensuring all people are lawfully region because now the organizations don’t register based on political status or healthcare or disability. They do not ensure constutionsl protections for indigenous Americans. They are truly limiting our futures, they are not the only native people.

  3. Your comment is awaiting moderation
    How many decades has southeast alaska controlled the alaska federation of natives? Can we at least move the capitol out of juneau so people from the arctic and other natives are represented in law, justice and economic and sociocultural issues. If our, the Alaska native organizations, elections & AFN’s elections were certified by the state they would have different outcomes. These are the most corrupt self-serving group of so called cultural leaders… the alaska culture of crime continues… this is why everyon is leaving alaska. They, or julie kitka would get upset if 3 or more people from the arctic got together and asked for anything. I’m glad to not be alaskan. This is the biggest joke in history, these groups are so corrupt… once upon a time I was Julie kitjas special assistant for telecommunications, she’s a thief and very unimpressive as her entire group only because they’ll do anything, copy, steal, defraud, white-collar crime, steal your data and life. He doesn’t represent me as an Alaska native.

  4. A Native Alaskan, country club, non-profit, centrist.
    Good luck young man, you now preside over a big organization that is splitting in half.
    Half Dem greenies (actually more) that want welfare for their people & half business people that understand someone has to pay the bills.

  5. There is a conundrum. Do Alaska Natives look ahead to the future or remain backs turned to reminisce of the past? Do they focus solely on what they have lost, or can they appreciate what they have gained?

    The traditional ways are part of us all. When family gathers to have traditional ceremony celebrating our heritage, it is a great, memorable time and we talk of things gone. As the elders fast disappear we bemoan the memories forever lost with them, encouraging the youth to listen to those remaining and preserve as many of the old ways as we can. Many members only criticize the new, though, loudly demanding return to the traditional. They then look at their smart phones, get in their modern vehicles, return to their modern equipped homes and enjoy their life of leisure and comfort while b!tching about what is lost.

    So it is a conundrum. Are those bitterly clinging to the past, of handed down memories probably as much idealized as real, willing to give up the modern advances to return to their heritage? Are they willing to return to 50% or more child mortality? Life span cut nearly in half? Frequent devastating famines? Loss of mobility greater than the horizon? Spending winter huddled around the fire wondering which relative will go next? I speak of my own elderly relatives and things I’ve heard and questioned.

    We can have both. I grew up with elders born in the 1800s, and some told of stories of their growing up, both joyous of the pleasures and mournful of the pains and losses. We can celebrate and preserve our past, while at the same time thankful that we don’t have to live it and thankful for the many advancements brought to us from cultures from around the world. I enjoy fried chicken, from Africa; hunting with gunpowder, from China; wearing cotton clothes, first cultivated in India; and the many things European. I also own many things Alaska Native, both artwork and traditional work items given to me by elders from Southeast to Barrow.

    For the record, my heritage is European, Middle Eastern, North African and Native American. I wish more was preserved than just names. I wish I knew stories of these people gone. I wish I had written or recorded the stories told in my youth. But the elders are gone now, like the wind. I treasure the past, but am alive today only because of modern technology, for which I am thankful.

    I applaud and congratulate Mr. Mallott on his appointment. I hope that he will bring advancement to the organization to both recognize and preserve the past, while moving toward the future to help us all advance as a society.

    Hopefully Mr. Mallott can reunite AFN for a brighter, more prosperous future for all of Alaska.

    • This statement: “We can celebrate and preserve our past, while at the same time thankful that we don’t have to live it and thankful for the many advancements brought to us from cultures from around the world.” Is this the reason that many natives will keep voting for Mary Peltola, Murkowski, Sullivan, Dunleavy and Haaland? Do the majority of Alaskan Natives believe that these folks are really looking out for all Alaskan Natives’ health and livelihood? Alaskan Natives, you are only going to be able to survive these times by waking up, spot the sugar-coating that these people put on their lies and voting these people out of office.

  6. I know Ben Mallott is the perfect leftist to replace Avowed leftist Julie Kitka…After all, he was a legislative aid to Lisa Murkowski

    • I’d rather support a liberal than a con(ervative). Take a hard look at what’s at the top of your voting ticket. A sad liar who has been found guilty 34 times by his fellow citizens of New York. Your candidate was found guilty of sexual assault, rape, and has to pay his victim $85 million. Your top candidate payed a por star $130,000 to keep her mouth shut while he ran his 2016 campaign. Your top candidate paid a Playboy bunny $150,000 hush money about their 10-month extramarital affair. Both of these women slept with your top candidate and the two women didn’t know about the other. The sexual affairs were going on while your top candidates wife was pregnant and in the hospital giving birth to their baby. So please, before you bash “leftist,” look in the mirror and ask: mirror, mirror on the wall who’s the con party of them all? 😂

      • Crage, you believe everything MSM tells you don’t you? I am voting for that felon as are many Americans and legal immigrants.

  7. How many decades has southeast alaska controlled the alaska federation of natives? Can we at least move the capitol out of juneau so people from the arctic and other natives are represented in law, justice and economic and sociocultural issues. If our, the Alaska native organizations, elections & AFN’s elections were certified by the state they would have different outcomes. These are the most corrupt self-serving group of so called cultural leaders… the alaska culture of crime continues… this is why everyon is leaving alaska. They, or julie kitka would get upset if 3 or more people from the arctic got together and asked for anything. I’m glad to not be alaskan. This is the biggest joke in history, these groups are so corrupt… once upon a time I was Julie kitkas special assistant for telecommunications, she’s a thief and very unimpressive as is her entire group, they’re only there because they’ll do anything, copy, steal, defraud, white-collar crime, steal your data and life. He doesn’t represent me as an Alaska native.

  8. Money , Power & Dynasty doesn’t make a free society but is often the “old culture”. Those with the money , power & dynasty want to preserve such things! Beware Alaska’s Natives,The US Constitution runs afoul to this way of thinking ! Good luck young Mallott. Liberty Ed

  9. “Citizen of the Year” award. Didn’t know that a subculture exists to give citizen of the year awards to pedophiles. Wow. Just, Wow!

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